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Lately, I've been attempting to pickle cabbages. This should be no suprise. I like pickled Chinese cabbages, and my house frequently makes pickled vegetables of all kinds. Since my diet over the next couple of months will be based on what I prepare in advance and don't get too lazy to dig out of the fridge -- incidentally, a bad habit, because I tend to forget to eat as much as I forget to sleep, having little balls of pickled vegetables to eat with rice and miso soup seems convenient. At the KSP, I managed to freeze myself dinners for two weeks. Pickled vegetables shouldn't be too hard.

My mother's the one who usually makes the dead pickles. I'm really better at making "live" a.k.a. fresh pickles. This is extremely fun to do during winter months when snow vegetables sprout in our garden at an uncontrollable, weed-like rate. I mean, live pickles don't usually require them to develop variations of single-celled bugs and a pong before you eat them. When you're allowing something to rot for a bunch of weeks whilst keeping it safe for human consumption, you really do want your mommy around to make sure it's very likely not poisonous.

My recent experiment with dead pickles involved wilting cabbage leaves (for a couple of days), and packing them with salt in jars. I don't exactly know if I did that right. But I got two jars of cabbage rolls with salt between the leaves. Then I left them on the kitchen counter and waited. The first day, I got a bit of liquid out of cabbages in both jars, which was a good sign. Our temperature indoors ranged between 24-30 degrees over the next few days, which was a bad, bad thing. By the fifth day, I got wilted cabbages with lots of liquid and important bubbles. Watching cabbages ferment is fascinating stuff. Unfortunately, I noticed there were spots on the cabbages that might've been bruises that occured when I was pressing the cabbages which seemed to be weeping. I had to think hard upon my choices at this point, because I've frankly never paid enough attention to the dead pickles as they were actually pickling to know if this was meant to happen. So I opened both jars and took a whiff, and yeah, they smelled pretty fermented, and they all had bubbles, which meant there was bacteria. Popped both in the fridge, since I believed they've spent enough time developing microorganisms in the open.

And kind of hope those rotting bits weren't bad rot. I did poke the leaves with a clean chopstick to make sure everything was still crunchy, and they pretty much were. I'll know in a few weeks if I have actual pickled cabbages, with which I might make something nice, like cream of diced chicken and pickled cabbage soup.

In other news, I have discovered my heinous and terrible crime of not watching Beck when it played. I'm really trying to catch up with my backlog, the one mokie describes as my being liable to get to, "about five minutes before the earth hurtles into the sun." I haven't even watched Furi Kuri yet. So I might as well kill two Pillows-sized rocks with the proverbial bird. Or something like that. And then I discovered the Beat Crusaders do some cool stuff. Some, not all the stuff they do. They do great covers. After which, I found out some of these covers showed up in Beck, which also has The Pillows. I have come to realize I missed out a lot by hiding under a rock. Nonetheless, this is why we drag goodly CDs and the occasional PS2 under rocks.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 14th, 2006 01:38 pm (UTC)
Furi Kuri is fun. :)

I'm not into pickled stuffs. My mom rarely used such things as I grew up, so I've never gotten used to the taste of pickled veggies.
Dec. 14th, 2006 01:54 pm (UTC)
I really developed a thing for pickled veggies in old age. I think what set me off was going to Japanese and Korean restaurants and finally being old enough to appreciate the dozens of pickles we'd get there. Then, when our garden started producing vegetables that could be pickled, I got into the whole process even more. :)

Furi Kuri has an ace soundtrack. Years ago, my friend threw The Pillows at me thinking I'd be lured to Furi Kuri by the magic rock music. She was partly correct: I fell rather in love with the magic rock music, and sort of didn't get to Furi Kuri!
Dec. 14th, 2006 04:48 pm (UTC)
Furi Kuri is all kinds of weird and I love it. :)

I'm getting interested in canning. That could be fun but I don't have a garden so it's kind of a silly thing for me to do. I'm still suspicious of pickling though.
Dec. 16th, 2006 10:40 am (UTC)
Isn't canning rather more work than pickling? *impressed*
My pickles look suspicious. I will need to take out all the pickles tonight in a sterilized basin to cut out the rotting bits, because they bug me.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )